a twig for a neck

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Jeff Jacobs

Senior Member
Telugu
Tuffnut speaks to Hiccup:

Tuffnut: But with me as your best man...your spirit guide, if you will...you'll learn to embrace your inner Viking. Show these naysayers, of which there are many, that you're more than just a malnourished runt with bad hair, strange teeth, and a twig for a neck.

What's the meaning of "twig for a neck"?
Source: How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World 2019
 
  • Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I would call it a judgemental statement. Athletes, in addition to being muscular also develop thicker necks. Non-athletes tend to have skinny (twig-like) necks.

    So I think it goes further than a simple description of the diameter of the neck.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I would call it a judgemental statement. Athletes, in addition to being muscular also develop thicker necks. Non-athletes tend to have skinny (twig-like) necks.
    For me, twig-like is skinny even for a "non-athlete" (speaking of using terms in a judgmental way ;)).
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    For me, twig-like is skinny even for a "non-athlete" (speaking of using terms in a judgmental way ;)).
    I agree. But if the author meant just "skinny" she/he could have said so. Instead he used "twig like neck". I think we are to read more into that statement than simply "skinny". (Written in a non-judgemental way.;))
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    Yet, you actually said that normal-sized necks are extremely skinny which is not what you meant.
    Correct. I should have said that non-athletes have thinner necks. A twig-like neck would be skinny and non-athletic.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Correct. I should have said that non-athletes have thinner necks. A twig-like neck would be skinny and non-athletic.
    That's probably an even worse display of bias. Many non-athletes are fat and have larger necks than athletes.
     

    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    The more common insult is, I believe, “pencil-neck.” I don’t think pencils exist in the How To Train Your Dragon universe, so the authors came up with an equivalent that works in their story.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    That's probably an even worse display of bias. Many non-athletes are fat and have larger necks than athletes.
    The more common insult is, I believe, “pencil-neck.” I don’t think pencils exist in the How To Train Your Dragon universe, so the authors came up with an equivalent that works in their story.
    :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

    Thank you. You expressed what I was trying to say better than I did (and with fewer words to boot).:)
     
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